TCR Troubles

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I have the 12' 3" TCR, custom made with a downlocking reel seat, which I find a delightful rod. I've not had any concerns about its being too stiff to hook or play fish.


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Took myself off to a lovely beat on the Nith today.. Decided I'd dust off the old TCR 12' 9" jobby (not my regular rod) with a Rio unispey multi tip 10/11.. What a lot of hard work that was, especially with a fast sink tip on..!

Stiffish wind blowing upstream and me on the right bank so cack-handed/fanny pulling it was but not a lot of joy.. Very open loops or just a dribbling mess.

What weight of line really makes these rods sing..? Maybe a 13/14# or something like a 1000 plus grain, old skool Spey line or even bespoke/specialist..?

My casting is generally OK most of the time depending on wind speed and my wellbeing so was banking on the unispey being a good match.

All sensible thoughts and comments appreciated..

Thanks much - Salmo9.

I've had the TCR 9129 for almost 18yrs now and it's still to this day my favourite rod. Bit of a marmite stick to be honest, but once you have it mastered it's an absolute dream to use. Remember less is more, if you push it you'll end up in a mess with sore shoulders. It's not a rod for ham fisted casting either.
If you can find the old Rio recommendations for lines for Sage then I think Simon Gawesworth gave it a pretty good appraisal. Personally I've found the AFS 9/10 lines with 10ft tip to be ideal, I wouldn't go much longer head wise. 40ft head plus tip would be a good balance for this rod and contrary to what others have said it will fish a fairly delicate line. The rod does have advantage of being able to handle heavy Skagits. It will happily fish anything from 600 - 750gr Rio. I regularly use the original Rio 750gr Skagit on it with no issues. It's a little big river rod and if you get it right, an absolute cannon!
If you ever feel the need to sell it, drop me a PM :)

Tom Sharkey

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I owned one of first TCR's that came out. Never experienced anything like it before. Got the full range of lines recommended for it and then a full range of lines that could do it justice, it was the 15ft one. Fished it for a full early week on the Ponoi and was amazed at the control I had never before achieved at such distance. I was then in peak physical health which alas is no longer the case and really enjoyed a Ponoi number of fish caught and released. I confess to love Sage rods and presently have their TCX's 15ft and
14ft. I recently offered the 15ft one for sale and there was no interest in it. Just cannot offer the 14ft for sale just yet as I would classify it as the best Sage salmon rod I ever fished with and still hoping against hope to swing a Green Highlander on the Varzuga. Still like the Loomis 9ft for grilse and lake trout.